11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Fascinating story of intrigue, betrayal, and revenge begins the life of famous Tibetan saint Milarepa,
This review is from: Milarepa [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
Filmed in the Spiti Valley on the Indian-Tibetan border, this award winning film tells the story of the first half of Milarepa's life (1052-1135), whose path to enlightenment began with revenge. A second movie is planned to complete the story.
When his well-to-do merchant father died, Milarepa's uncle and aunt took all the family's wealth, suddenly thrusting Milarepa and his mother into poverty. His mother plots revenge by sending Milarepa away to study sorcery. Milarepa comes back to the village and causes a violent lightning storm to kill many people.
When the villagers chase him, Milarepa causes large rocks to fall from a ridge blocking their way. As he escapes Milarepa meets an old monk, and learns of Buddha's teachings. Milarepa returns to his sorcery teacher, who advises him to study with Marpa. The film ends with Milarepa seeking Marpa.
The landscape is stark and beautiful. The special effects are quite well done - I especially liked the scene where Milarepa gains mastery in sorcery, a bit like a Pink Floyd psychedelic trip from the 60s. My favourite scene was when Milarepa meets an old monk while escaping from the villagers, and sits quietly with old Buddhist paintings all around him on the wall. You can feel that his redemption is at hand.
As companions to this movie, I highly recommend reading a book about his life such as The Magnificent Trickster - The Story Of Milarepa by Molly MacGregor, and some of his teachings like in the book Milarepa: Songs On The Spot by Nicole Riggs.